Sunday, July 21, 2013

Review: Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Changed the World

Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World

By Vicki Myron

Blurb: How much of an impact can an animal have? How many lives can one cat touch? How is it possible for an abandoned kitten to transform a small library, save a classic American town, and eventually become famous around the world? You can't even begin to answer those questions until you hear the charming story of Dewey Readmore Books, the beloved library cat of Spencer, Iowa.

Dewey's story starts in the worst possible way. Only a few weeks old, on the coldest night of the year, he was stuffed into the returned book slot at the Spencer Public Library. He was found the next morning by library director, Vicki Myron, a single mother who had survived the loss of her family farm, a breast cancer scare, and an alcoholic husband. Dewey won her heart, and the hearts of the staff, by pulling himself up and hobbling on frostbitten feet to nudge each of them in a gesture of thanks and love. For the next nineteen years, he never stopped charming the people of Spencer with his enthusiasm, warmth, humility, (for a cat) and, above all, his sixth sense about who needed him most. 

As his fame grew from town to town, then state to state, and finally, amazingly, worldwide, Dewey became more than just a friend; he became a source of pride for an extraordinary Heartland farming town pulling its way slowly back from the greatest crisis in its long history.

Genres: Non-Fiction, Biography

Published: September 24, 2008 

My Rating: 4 stars

Dewey was a book that made me cry. I can’t say that about many stories.

I don’t normally read biographies, but I’d been seeing this one in libraries for a while, and I decided I was going to read it. It sat unread on my kindle for a while, and finally I got to it, expecting a story that I wouldn’t overly enjoy, but could check off my to-read list. 

I liked this more than I expected, though. I fell in love with Dewey, a cat that I wish I could have met. His Buddha poses, the Dewey treatment…that was adorable! . Dewey was such a friendly cat, and it was heartwarming to read about him; he was my favorite part of the book. 

That brings up the question: Huh? I thought the whole book was about Dewey??? The answer is, heck no! Sometimes it seems like the author went off on a tangent and talks about Spencer, Iowa, more than little Dewey, and I would wonder, ‘when do I get to read more about the kitty?’ I wanted more about Dewey, and less about the history of the author’s hometown.

The end is what made me cry. I knew what would happen--what always happens at the end of biographies, but that didn’t make it any less sad. I don’t cry often at books, but I had some tears for Dewey.

I enjoyed this book a lot, but I wish that there was more Dewey in it. The book is titled ‘Dewey’, after all.

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